We can’t get enough of Japanese culture and Japanese cuisine. From shabu-shabu, izakayas, to high-end omakase, here’s the lowdown on the best Japanese restaurants in Jakarta.
If we had to pick a favourite cuisine, Japanese would make a strong contender. We can just imagine popping in delicious sushi and sashimi for days, and stuffing ourselves silly with comforting bowls of shabu-shabu and ramen. Lucky for us, Jakarta has an incredible array of top-notch Japanese eateries. Ahead, our top ten favourite Japanese restaurants in town.
Sushi Masa may be a bit of a drive, but this out of the way Japanese eatery is well worth the trip. Located near the fish harbour in Muara Baru, Sushi Masa serves some of the freshest sushi and sashimi around town. The heaping plates of creamy uni, sweet unagi, and buttery toro does add up, so you’ll want to make the visit over closer to payday.
Sushi Masa, Grey Building Lantai 3, Jl. Tuna Raya No. 5, Penjaringan, North Jakarta. p. +62 21 2926 3561.
The recently refurbished Sushi Sei has been serving up first-rate quality sushi in Jakarta for years. It’s no wonder that Sushi Sei devotees flock here for authentic sushi and sashimi. Rainbow coloured chirashi bowls are a fan favourite, as is their signature buttery salmon belly aburi, and sweet tamago nigiri. For front row action, reserve a seat by the bar to watch the sushi masters work their magic, and get plenty of off the menu recommendations too.
Sushi Sei, Plaza Senayan, Jl. Asia Afrika, Senayan, South Jakarta. p. +62 21 572 5510.
While Aoki serves all kinds of Japanese delicacies, the Japanese restaurant at Gran Mahakam is our go-to spot when we’re craving shabu-shabu and sukiyaki. Aoki is one of the only hotpot restaurants in Jakarta to use kami-nabe, the unique Japanese paper pot that is filled with steaming savoury broth and is fired up right at your table. The combo of freshly cooked thin slivers of wagyu beef, fat juicy udon noodles and steamed veggies is something we never tire of. If you’re heading there with a big party, request one of the private rooms for a more intimate setting.
Aoki at Gran Mahakam, Jl. Mahakam I No.8, Blok M, South Jakarta. p. +62 21 720 9966.
We find it hard to find a Japanese eatery as chic as Edogin. Not only do they have a sleek interior, they also bring the haute-cuisine to Japanese fare. Their omakase suspends us between the traditional and cutting-edge, while their sizzling beef teppanyaki pampers our tastebuds like no other. We really dig their Saga beef, a Japanese beef brand ranking as high as Kobe beef. When a la carte seems a little limiting, we opt for their Japanese buffet! Need a little oomph to impress your friends? Book their private teppanyaki room and have your own live-cooking show.
Edogin, Hotel Mulia Senayan, Jl. Asia Afrika Senayan, p. +6221 5747777.
Enmaru is the latest twist on Izakaya with a bird’s eye view: it’s definitely where we want to be! Craftily mixing between the traditional and the modern, Enmaru takes the meticulous tradition of Japanese cuisine to a whole new level. We love their Enmaru roll (a feast on the tastebuds as well as the eyes!) and their one-of-a-kind Foie Gras Chawanmushi. Wagyu lovers, rejoice! Their Wagyu Shabu-Shabu Udon is a favorite, as well as their Wagyu Sirloin Steak. Planning a party? Do it Japanese style with Enmaru’s Kaiseki (multi-course menu) in their private dining room.
Enmaru, Altitude, The Plaza, 46th fl., Jl. MH Thamrin, Kav. 28-30, p. +6221 29922448.
As one of the long-running players in the Japanese cuisine business, Keyaki really knows what it’s doing. Since 1976, Keyaki has been consistently serving high-quality Japanese fare to the residents of the Big Durian. We love to sit at their Robatayaki counter and watch the chef select the freshest ingredients (or we can choose by ourselves!) and slow-grill them over hot charcoal to perfection. Their Gindara set is also a favorite, and we top it off either with their Uji Kintoki (ice cream with red bean) or their Yaki Banana (grilled banana with ice cream) – on most days, it’s difficult for us to choose!
Keyaki, Sari Pan Pacific Jakarta, Lobby fl., Jl. MH Thamrin No. 6, p. +6221 29932888.
Kahyangan is on top of our list for consistency of quality. Serving shabu-shabu since 1973, Kahyangan has awed generation after generation of political leaders, celebrities, and die-hard foodies like us! What makes Kahyangan soar on such a pedestal? Their ponzu sauce is unmatched, their grade 9 Wagyu beef from Ohmi province of Japan, or their wonderful view of the Bundaran HI? All of that, plus their legendary banana flambé. Kanpai to Kahyangan! We hope they continue to serve generations to come.
Kahyangan, Wisma Nusantara Bld., 28th fl., Jl. MH Thamrin No. 59, p. +6221 3912963, 31921111.
Dinner and a show? Head to Sumire for the finest teppanyaki Jakarta has to offer (we love the smell of Wagyu cooked right in front of us!) and have their chefs flaunt their acrobatic cooking skills. They never cease to amaze us! Spice things up with the famous Lukman sambal, special chili sauce mix by their house chef, you won’t find it anywhere else! Don’t forget to book beforehand – at the teppanyaki area for live-cooking, at the normal dining table, or in the private rooms for quality time with your beau.
Sumire, Grand Hyatt Jakarta, 4th fl., Jl. MH Thamrin Kav. 28-30, p. +6221 29921234.
Takumi Robata & Sushi
Takumi is a new player in Jakarta, but it is surely not a new player in the world-wide arena – just check out the awards they’ve won! Specializing in Robatayaki cuisine (grilled seafood originating from the Sendai area), Takumi indulges us with the freshest ingredients flown straight from Tsukiji market in Japan. The cosy interior and the view of the green golf course outside also soothes us and, well, so does the extensive Sake list. Divine!
Takumi Robata & Sushi, Senayan National Golf Club, Jl. Asia Afrika Pintu IX, p. +6221 93807642.
Asuka is dead serious about serving us unique and authentic Omakase: be prepared to find something different between the 9 dish line-up every day! Yes, you read right, every day – talk about commitment. For a la carte, they pull all the stops to surprise us with a special menu each month. Leave it to Asuka to astound us with upscale ingredients that are rare finds, among them are blue fin tuna, abalone and crisp soft-shell crab.
Asuka, JW Marriott Hotel, lobby fl., Jl. DR Ide Anak Agung Gde Agung Kav. E.1.2 No. 1 & 2, Kawasan Mega Kuningan, p. +6221 57988898.